Public management & finance

This field looks at the effectiveness, efficiency, and equity of government management and leadership, providing valuable insights into making government work better for everyone. Notable areas of the School of Public Affairs faculty expertise include local government, budget and finance, disaster and emergency management, healthy and sustainable communities, and social equity and representation in government. Our alumni serve in government positions across Colorado, the nation, and the world.

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Alumni stories

Our School of Public Affairs alumni make a huge impact in Colorado and beyond! Read their stories.

  • Alaina McWhorter headshot (1)

    Six Questions for SPA Alum Alaina McWhorter, Special Projects Manager at the Denver Department of Parks and Recreation

    Dec 6, 2023 by Ellen Patterson
    Thanks to her credentials from CU Denver as a Master of Public Administration and Certified Nonprofit Professional (CNP), Alaina McWhorter catapulted her public service career from an entry- to mid-level financial analyst to a government affairs specialist advising executive leadership at the State Legislature, the City and County of Denver, and numerous nonprofit partners on best practices to achieve policy goals and program outcomes.
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  • Greg LeBlanc

    Six Questions for SPA Alum Greg LeBlanc, Assistant Town Manager of Snowmass Village

    Jul 7, 2023
    Greg LeBlanc joined the Town of Snowmass Village in March of 2022 after serving for five years with the City of Grand Junction, Colorado. Prior positions include serving Boulder County, Colorado and the City and County of Denver. He holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental biology (Ecology) from Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado, and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Colorado Denver.
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  • Melinda Pollack 2 (1) (1)

    Six Questions for SPA Alum Melinda Pollack, Managing Director at Blue Meridian Partners

    Jun 23, 2023
    Melinda Pollack, Managing Director at Blue Meridian Partners, provides strategic and executional leadership on critical business priorities and leads innovation efforts which will expand Blue Meridian’s work as it evolves. She explores new philanthropic investment opportunities, leads due diligence on potential Blue Meridian investees, and manages relationships with current investees, with a focus on Place Matters. Melinda earned a BA at George Washington University and an MPA from the University of Colorado, Denver.
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  • Coivid-Epidemiologist-850w

    MPA alumni Bookman and Butler share experiences of leading COVID responses in Colorado

    Sep 11, 2020 by Joan Fishburn
    At both the local and state level, School of Public Affairs alumni have been instrumental in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Scott Bookman (MPA '15), Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment incident commander for COVID-19, and Geoff Butler (MPA '19), Battalion Chief, Poudre Valley Fire Authority, recently took some time to answer questions about their current roles addressing COVID-19 and how they have grown as leaders dealing with the challenges posed by the pandemic.
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  • news-old-colorado-city-850w

    Economic development class forges connections in Old Colorado City

    Sep 21, 2020 by Guest Contributor
    Since 2017, students in Randy Harrison’s Economic Development class (PUAD 5630) have had the opportunity to engage with Colorado communities in an experience unlike any felt in a typical classroom. Through its partnership with Downtown Colorado, Inc., this CU Denver School of Public Affairs (SPA) course allows students to become project coordinators in a process known as the Colorado Challenge Program. Students connect with community members and experts in the field to establish a plan of work to engage public, private, and non-profit partners in addressing a significant community challenge over the course of their semester. Through their partnership, SPA students and DCI have connected with and created initiatives for almost 30 Colorado communities.
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